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I am at the boiling piont with Honda

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by DFW Area Landscaper, Jun 29, 2007.

  1. DFW Area Landscaper

    DFW Area Landscaper LawnSite Silver Member
    from DFW, TX
    Posts: 2,116

    I have an entire fleet of the Honda HRC216HXA's and I am about to absolutely lose it.

    Why on God's green earth did they decide to inatall a hydraulic transmission on these things? It doesn't help prevent break downs at all. The drive shafts still wear out. The real liability is the hydraulic transmission itself.

    I spent an entire TWO FRIGGIN DAYS trying to rebuild two slow transmissions in my garage this winter only to find that these things are WAY over my head.

    To replace a hydraulic transmission is a $300 part plus the labor, which I do myself.

    The problem I have, trying to keep an entire fleet of these things running is, once that transmission gets slow, it is useless. The workers will not tolerate a slow transmission. At that point, Honda gets to sell me a new one and I get the pleasure of not only paying for it, but I also get to isntall the thing in my "spare" time.

    Had I gone with Toro, I simply WOULD NOT HAVE the liability of a $300 part failing all the time. I am very tempted to sell my entire Honda fleet this winter and switch to Toros. It would cost me around $17,000 but I have ABLUTELY HAD IT WITH HONDA and their over priced parts.

    My advice for anyone just starting out: That first mower you buy is pretty much your choice for life. You don't want to have some Snappers, some Toros and some Hondas. As long as all the machines are the same, you can stock parts for them.

    I have over $5,000 worth of Honda parts in my garage and I still can't keep them running. If I switch to Toro, I will lose all these parts I haven't used yet. I have 8 production machines and 4 spares and I had to buy a new one yesterday because all of my spares were inoperable!!!!

    From what I understand, the Justmowit guys are buying a new Toro 21" mower each spring and running it all year with very little outside of replacing wear items, if any items at all. Clark has been buying their machines are year old and from the way he talks, he is not having many problems with break downs.

    You CANNOT do that with Honda. They will run fine for half a season, but then they start trickling with issues, some easy to fix, some not so easy...the failed tranny being the worst possible issue of them all.

    I will try to post some picks of the Hondas and their piss poor design issues later. Broken handles are very common. Broken blade engagement levers are completely expected. Neither are wear items but I stock both because I know they'll break. This is just the tip of the ice berg in terms of my complaint list with Honda.

    DFW Area Landscaper
  2. lawnMaster5000

    lawnMaster5000 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 589

    i have used both and I am much happier with toro, I think you will be too.

    Unfortunately they dont make the 2-cycle engine anymore.
  3. PTP

    PTP LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Tulsa
    Posts: 1,383

    DFW, consider using the Quick 36 instead of the 21" mowers. I used to use the 21" exclusively as well but switched over to the quick.

    The benefits are many. Faster mowing, a more durable machine, very low impact on property, your new guy won't run it through a fence, nicer cut, bag/mulch/discharge abilities,etc.

    It will also fit in most gates. And if the gate is a little tight, tip it on it's side and 2 guys can still fit it through. And if the AC is in the way, simply lift it over.

    Justmowit has a good business model and it worked well for me but when I switched to the Quick 36, I found a way to improve it.

    The biggest problem that we have had has been snapping reverse and throttle cables. They are easy and cheap to replace and so far Gary has covered them under warranty. I don't know if the new setup is better or not.
  4. saw man

    saw man LawnSite Bronze Member
    from utah
    Posts: 1,021

    Never had a problem with them, if you know how to use the mower you dont have problems. If you treat them like crap then they wont last long, no matter which machine you buy.
  5. MeadowsLawnCare

    MeadowsLawnCare LawnSite Member
    Posts: 192

    Start selling parts on ebay, split your fleet with toro. Try trading parts for toro parts do whatever. Or offer the whole thing for sale parts, fleet and all!
  6. POPO4995

    POPO4995 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,206

    I have a HRR216VXA and dont like it as much as my old Toro I sold. My next might be a Toro again.
  7. lawnboy dan

    lawnboy dan LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,712

    you will be worse off with toro-i have told you this in the past. the trans on a toro is less durable than a honda and the wheel mounts are weak and a constant wear concern . i agree the drive shaft on the honda is not the answer.i have replaced mine 3 times in the 16 yrs i have owneed it. i still have never had a single problem with the hydro trans
  8. TXNSLighting

    TXNSLighting LawnSite Fanatic
    from DFW, TX
    Posts: 6,462

    theres a reason you see the majority of lawn care services with toro. it is one of the very best!
  9. John Gamba

    John Gamba LawnSite Fanatic
    from ct
    Posts: 10,812

    There personal pace mowers work very well. there cheaper to start with.
  10. Sandgropher

    Sandgropher LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 909

    This is disapointing to read, hopefully Honda are fully aware of the problem and will rectify it as soon as possible, i have to confess i usually hear good things about Honda, maybe they dont make them like they use to, i have heard a lot get built in China ?

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